March 15, 1996 in Nation/World

Fall In Incomes, Housing Hurts Poor

Compiled From Wire Services

The one-two punch of declining incomes and shrinking housing supplies forced a record 5.3 million poor families seeking federal help to spend too much on rent or live in substandard conditions in 1993, Housing Secretary Henry Cisneros said Thursday.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development’s biannual report on “worst-case” housing needs showed that the number of cases grew by 1.5 million between 1978 and 1993, the last year with available figures.

Cisneros said the situation is likely to worsen because waiting lists have grown since 1993, Congress has not earmarked more money for rental assistance and affordable housing supplies continue to shrink.

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